Coromandel Goldrush Rally nears the start line 12 August 2019 The Goldrush Rally of the Coromandel will get off to a flying start this Friday evening with a street party in Whitianga before the racing begins in earnest Saturday morning. About 70 cars are expected to take part in what is round five of the New Zealand Rally Championship. (See further down for the full list of road closures and race timings.) “I’d like to give a big Coromandel welcome to the rally drivers and their crews, and a big thanks to the Rally NZ organisers for holding the event again in our district,” our Mayor Sandra Goudie says. “The rally revs up things over the winter when it’s usually pretty quiet and brings valuable visitor spending. It’s also good publicity for the Coromandel because the rally gets extensive national and international television coverage,” Mayor Sandra says. Ben Hunt, who currently is leading the NZ Rally Championship will be racing. We should find from this event if he will win the overall championship. Eugene Creugnet and co-driver Philippe Delrieu (car 19), Jean-Louis Leyraud and co-driver Jean-Yves Morelli (car 20) from New Caledonia, and Rifat Sungkar and co-driver Muhammad Redwan (car 22) from Indonesia are also among the teams. This year there is a new initiative – to show their support for the area, drivers and crews will carry out a beach clean-up on Sunday morning in Whitianga. For Friday evening’s street party in Whitianga, Albert Street will be closed from Monk St to Lee St from 4-7:30pm for people to have a look at the assembled rally cars. There will be food stalls, late night shopping and meet and greet sessions with the drivers between 5-7pm. Coromandel’s More FM will be broadcasting live from the street party and you can duck into the French Fig café to catch Vegas Brown playing live. If you are a community group and would like to be involved in the rally to help with your fundraising, please get in touch with our Council’s District Events Co-ordinator Kirstin Richmond 07 868 0200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also on Friday, the rally cars will be conducting a reconnaissance of the stage routes. The vehicles will be clearly marked and travel in a convoy. The reconnaissance does not involve road closures. Letters have been sent to residents along the routes. The rally headquarters will be at the Mercury Bay Multisports Park on Moewai Park Road in Whitianga (off South Highway), where on Saturday 17 August people are welcome to visit the rally pits and enjoy the food stalls. On Saturday afternoon there will be the ITM Kopu Super Special Stage on Moewai Road and Abrahamson and Dokato Drives, which, like the other stages, is open for the public to watch, beginning at 4:30pm. The rally racing takes place through Saturday on four routes, with the finish at Blacksmith Lane, Whitianga, which will be closed from Albert Street to The Esplanade from 4-8pm. For children, there is also a colouring competition to take part in. Download the drawing here and colour it in. All entries should be dropped off to the Mercury Bay Informer office on Monk St no later than noon on Thursday 15 August. The winner will be announced live on Coromandel More FM on Friday morning. Full list of road closures and timings for the Saturday racing: Download this map to see the full routes and timings of road closures. Kennedy Bay Road, Tuateawa Road, Waikawau Beach Road and Port Charles Road. Kennedy Bay Road from house number 1424 to Tuateawa Road. Including all of Tuateawa Road to the intersection of Waikawai Beach Road. Including all of Waikawai Beach Road to the intersection of Port Charles Road. And including Port Charles Road from the intersection with Waikawau Beach Road to the intersection of Colville Road. The period of the closure: 6 hours from 7:00am to 1:00pm. Cars will be travelling from Kennedy Bay to Port Charles. 309 Road From the Waterworks gate to House 1715. The period of the closure: 9 hours from 9:30am to 6:30pm. Cars will be travelling from the Waterworks towards Whitianga. Tapu-Coroglen Road From the intersection of SH25 at Coroglen to house number 436 Tapu-Coroglen Road. The period of the closure: 7.5 hours from 11:00am to 6:30pm Cars will be travelling from Coroglen to Tapu. Dakota Drive, Abrahamson Drive, Moewai Road Moewai Road from the intersection of SH25 to the intersection of Abrahamson Drive. All of Abrahamson Drive and Dakota Drive. The period of the closure: 4.25 hours from 2:45pm to 7:00pm. Blacksmith Lane From the intersection of Albert Street to the Esplanade. The period of the closure: 4:00pm to 8:00pm. For more information go to the Rally NZ website.